Monday, September 9, 2013

The impact of powerful stories

Recently, Baby Girl (who is really not a baby any longer, but let's not talk about that) has decided she loves Disney princess movies. She's always asking, "Mommy, I watch Little Mermaid?" (You should hear how she enunciates Little Mermaid. It may be the cutest thing ever. Like, so cute that I sometimes make her ask me a couple of times before I respond just so I can keep hearing her say it. But I digress...) or "Mommy, I watch Belle?"

So if you hear me singing Disney songs, now you'll know why.

But the point is that watching these movies again has reminded me of when I used to watch these movies years ago. Particularly Beauty and the Beast. I have always loved Beauty and the Beast stories and movies, particularly BEAUTY by Robin McKinley and the Disney movie. (Except for how weird the beast looks once he's human again. What happened to the guy in the portrait? Anyway...) I used to feel like I could be Belle (minus the being so beautiful that guys were having bands waiting outside for me, preparing for our wedding before they even proposed). But the book-loving, kind of odd, not understood, somewhat lonely part? Yep. I totally related to that. And I'd dream of meeting my prince (even if he seemed like a beast at first, as long as he had that LIBRARY). (Wow, I'm using lots of parentheses in this post. [sorry about that])

Luckily, I eventually met my prince, and he wasn't even hairy at all. And he is going to build me a gorgeous library someday. Woot, woot! ;-)

The point is that watching this movie again has brought back those memories and got me thinking about the impact stories can have on us. They can help us to dream, give us characters to relate to. They can transport us out of our lives and take us anywhere in the world--or to completely different, new worlds. We can experience love, pain, loss, triumph--anything and everything in the pages of a book, or in a good movie.

And that's why I love to not only write, but also to read as many books as I possibly can. I love creating my own stories, in hopes that I will be able to do all of that for someone else--and I love reading fantastic books and letting someone else take me away into their world. I love that feeling of, "I can't stop, I have to finish this book! Except I don't want it to end... what do I do?!?!" (Even though that often leads to exhaustion the next day because I stay up too late finishing the book...)

Good stories wield a powerful and amazing kind of magic, don't you think? The kind of magic that can make an exhausted mom of three give up sleep to find out what happens. That is power, people.

So, tell me, what are some of your favorite stories from when you were growing up or now?


Anonymous said...

I feel that same way about Beauty & the Beast, even the portrait/reversal thing because what's up with that?

Books have always been magic for me. I feel better when I read them, the world looks better after reading them, and everything feels possible.

Leandra Wallace said...

I was a teen in the library during lunch when I discovered a ragged copy of Beauty on a spinning rack. I fell in love w/that book! It's my favorite of McKinley's work.

Kathryn Purdie said...

As a teen, I actually didn't do much reading (ducks tomatoes), except for what was required in school--and I loved all those classics. So the stories that especially moved me were those on film, particularly Edward Scissorhands. I felt in many, many ways like that sad, scissorhanded boy that no one understood. A small part of me still does.

Michelle D. Argyle said...

Aww, love this. Stories are everything! I read a lot of older fiction was I was a teen, like Tom Clancy and John Grisham. When I was smaller, I really liked fairy tales, which is where Bonded came from, I think.

Carolina M. Valdez Schneider said...

Seriously. I can't believe the things I've given up to finish an amazing book. Totally powerful.

Also, Baby Girl sounds like she's just about the cutest girl ever.

Bailey Hughes said...

My favorite Disney movie goes between Mulan or Pocahontas but now that I'm older I'm leaning more towards Mulan because it leaves such a powerful message. It's a go get it kind of movie, I think that all characters should be stronger because it makes them more appealing. They often leave me wonder if I would be that strong in their situation and that's what I look for in a book, and movie.